Topics: Communication, Feeling, Idea Pages: 1 (420 words) Published: June 1, 2014

Tannen’s “Fighting for Our Lives” touches on how our culture is seen as an argument culture where there are two distinct sides to an argument seen as being either right or wrong, without a middle ground. The argument culture, Tannen explains, urges us to approach the world in an adversarial frame of mind: the best way to approach any sort of idea, dialogue, or conversation is to set it up as a debate. This tactic does not solve any residing problems, by ignoring what the other person has to say and assuming your opinion is better than them is not going to resolve any issues.“In the argument culture, criticism, attack, or opposition are the predominant if not the only ways of responding to ideas.” According to Tannen we battle for top dog, strive to be the best, and to prove that we are right whether that means to criticize or manipulate words around in order for a feel of self-satisfaction. I find Roger’s “Dealing with Breakdowns in Communication” very educating and connecting to my own personal beliefs of how effective communicating should be. He explains how our own natural tendency to judge, evaluate, to approve or disapprove another person or group creates a mutual interpersonal communication barrier. Our preconceived notions of people eliminate the desire to truly want to hear them out or get to know them on a personal level. To solve the major barriers to communication we need to see the expressed ideas and attitude from another person’s point of view, to be able to sense how they are feeling and to be able to achieve his frame of reference. “Understanding with a person, not about him” ensures mutual communication is key in solving any type of problems. Both readings provide a great understanding of how we live in an argument culture where “us versus them” type of attitude have been so deeply engrained in how we communicate and interact with others through media and politics. The idea that opposition is seen to be the most effective way to get...
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